Notes on the Atrocities
Like a 100-watt radio station, broadcasting to the dozens...

Friday, April 02, 2004  

Sibel Edmonds

Remember that name--you may be hearing a lot more of it after the 9/11 Commission publishes its final report. From the Independent:

A former translator for the FBI with top-secret security clearance says she has provided information to the panel investigating the 11 September attacks which proves senior officials knew of al-Qa'ida's plans to attack the US with aircraft months before the strikes happened....

Sibel Edmonds said she spent more than three hours in a closed session with the commission's investigators providing information that was circulating within the FBI in the spring and summer of 2001 suggesting that an attack using aircraft was just months away and the terrorists were in place. The Bush administration, meanwhile, has sought to silence her and has obtained a gagging order from a court by citing the rarely used "state secrets privilege".

She told The Independent yesterday: "I gave [the commission] details of specific investigation files, the specific dates, specific target information, specific managers in charge of the investigation. I gave them everything so that they could go back and follow up. This is not hearsay. These are things that are documented. These things can be established very easily."

She added: "There was general information about the time-frame, about methods to be used ­ but not specifically about how they would be used ­ and about people being in place and who was ordering these sorts of terror attacks. There were other cities that were mentioned. Major cities with skyscrapers."

If her name seems familiar to you, it should be. After the 9/11 attacks, she was hired by the FBI as a translator to search back through documents seized during the investigation. In 2002 she blew the whistle on the FBI's translation team, which was woefully unprepared to deal with the volume of material they suddenly needed to review. She was fired that year and has been under a John-Ashcroft-ordered gag order since (I wonder why).

I'm not shocked there hasn't been much press around her reports thus far (the press seeming generally disinterested in investigations), but a 9/11 report could change all that. In any case, further evidence of gross incompetence on the Bush team's part.

posted by Jeff | 1:40 PM |
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